Comprised of Julien and Thomas de Bie, Parallelle is an electronic music group who produces groovy electronic beats on the dancefloors that are either performed live or as a DJ set. What makes the unparalleled duo extraordinary is that they compose music and tell personal stories based on the recordings, people, and experiences from their far-fetched travels. Their latest project A Day In combines electronic music with indigenous sounds from diverse countries to illuminate ancient musical cultures and expose noteworthy sounds from exotic places around the world.
The Dutch brothers grew up on the Côte d’Azur in the South of France, a special place encompassed by both the sea and the mountains, and were shaped by the compelling sounds of jazz, hip hop, and classical music. “The quality of life there, in terms of weather and food, is undeniable. There are little provincial villages with the best wineries, cheese stores, and bakeries, and everything you need for a perfect sunset aperitif.” The driven musicians moved to Amsterdam and launched their own imprint Klassified Records in 2019 and also opened The House of Klassified, which is a creative hub that combines a studio, recording facility, art gallery, and co-working spaces into one.
Over the years, the Parallelle sound has evolved from a deeper, ethereal techno to a slower, organic house sound. During the Covid pandemic, they collaborated with conservatory students to compose a more jazzy electronic album. After this musical journey and with a lot of experimentation, Julien and Thomas feel confident to have now found their unique signature take on electronic club music with groovy rhythmics, uplifting vocals, live recorded instruments, and a heavy and banging baseline. The free-spirited fellows initially began translating places into musical pieces with their first album A Day At that was released in 2022. “Places like a factory, dental office, kitchen, and ski stations were our musical playground. Our curiosity for sound went further to foreign countries and especially to cultures, which we are very fascinated by because they tell so many stories. The idea was to translate a city and its sounds into a piece of music and encourage people to listen.” Some everyday sounds in the world that are underappreciated include local markets, for “there are so many frequencies and things happening there that tell a million stories.” Even the smallest details of your everyday routine are underrated like “the water tapping before brushing your teeth, the birds chirping when exiting the house, the rolling of bike chains, the sound of the lock opening with your keys, etc.” The perceptive characters admit that we are “living in an increasingly sound polluted environment, especially for those who live in large cities. It becomes hard to listen to distinctive sounds as we swim in a constant messy soundscape of cars, planes, factories, and construction. Sometimes, getting out of the city and taking the time to listen to the wind on the grass, the little streams of rivers flowing, and all these natural calming sounds are so nurturing for our lives.” With their current album A Day In, Parallelle hopes to preserve native archaic customs and heritages for future generations that are at risk of being lost and forgotten while unveiling colorful communities, delicate instruments, and atmospheric rhythms.
The world is immense and there are so many untouched places that they’d love to roam to in the future. “If we would have to pick three cultures, the Amazon with the Yanomami tribe would be on top of the list, because they are endangered and have so much knowledge that needs to be highlighted; Mongolia with the Kazakhs’s eagles hunters in the Altai Mountains; and Zambia and the rhythmical Lozi culture. The choice not only comes from wanting to discover interesting countries and cultures but also where we have good connections and local friends that can introduce us to the essence so that we can feel like a local.” Regardless of where they go, the unconventional travelers always take the time to fully immerse themselves in a city and search for exclusive sounds. For around 10 days, they usually dwell with local guides and artists that take them into the hidden treasures of the city. “The exploration through the ears also influences the immersion,” the keen guys explain. “The whole point of exploration is to be curious, open up your senses, look around, interact with locals, and understand your surroundings, culture, and people. It also creates a sense of trust with the local who opens up more so that you can see through their lenses on how they view life.”
In the past year, Thomas and Julien have learned several things about themselves and their work, such as the fact that quality is better than quantity. “Less is more in everything that we do, whether it’s based on a track production or in the number of projects we take,” relays Julien. “It’s better to do few things very well than spread yourself too thin amongst too many things.” The ambitious boys do not see their field of work as a competition, for they are just doing what they love while improving and bettering themselves along the way. “We love to create emotions and trigger people’s subconscious minds with music, images, questions, and texts, especially lyrics, and simply hope to be known and remembered as artists that moved you.”
This month, they will be heading to Japan and Indonesia for pleasure by absorbing themselves into their alluring surroundings without a specific shooting schedule. In the next few weeks, they are preparing themselves for a concert tour of their second album and have some bangers coming out on different labels like Crosstown Rebels as well as their own trademark, Klassified. They’re also planning to experience the Scottish Highland Games in the summer and feel that Africa is calling to them. Be sure to check out their latest video series A Day In which features 11 short videos, and check out their latest releases, “Essaouira” and “Real de Catorce” EP out this Friday. Support the captivating artists now on Beatport and Instagram.